Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Something slithery this way comes!

Ancient Amphibians Left Full-Body Imprints
The imprints were found in reddish- brown, fine-grained sandstone of the Mauch Chunk Formation in eastern Pennsylvania. The rocks were collected decades ago but had been sitting, unexamined, in the Reading Public Museum Collection in that state. They were rediscovered by college student David Fillmore as part of his senior thesis at Kutztown State University, also in Pennsylvania

[Another story about the same fossils but with more details.
Experts discover rare amphibian imprints]

Right here in PA folks. Of course today you can just go to the Susquehanna River and get yourself a live Hellbender.

Endangered species?

In the years before we moved from NJ, the number of trick-or-treaters dwindled to a mere handful. Last year we were living full time at the Bolt Hole at the end of the paved road and power line with the nearest occupied dwelling a quarter mile away--and it had no kids. I figure the nearest school age youngster was, oh, three quarters of a mile away.

Here at the Aerie we face a similar situation. Houses along the road are few and far between and the number with youngsters is even fewer. I don't expect to be visited by and ghosts, goblins or ghouls this evening.


I miss the times when we had a hundred or more costumed kids between the ages of 4 and 14 ringing our doorbell.

What Kind of Monster Are You?

I came across this over at blonde sagacity and thought I'd give it a try. Seem's like I'm a Ghost. Booo!

You Are a Ghost

Mysterious, independent, and often unseen - you always do things your own way.
You are introverted, shy, and even a little secretive.
People are dying to know you better, but you're a difficult person to know.
A lot of your contributions to the world are left invisible and unfelt.

Your greatest power: Blending in really well

Your greatest weakness: Being too passive

You play well with: Witches

LZ 129 Hindenburg

I mentioned in my post yesterday on the War of the Worlds broadcast that people were conditioned to believe what they heard as breaking news on the radio in part because of the live broadcast of the crash of the zeppelin LZ 129 Hindenburg. I was checking out the Wikipedia entries for both the crash and Herbert Morrison’s report and discovered they did not broadcast the events live.

On May 6, 1937, Herbert Morrison of WLS in Chicago was on hand to record the docking of the Hindenburg. There was no live broadcast from the Lakehurst Naval Air Station.

Morrison and his sound engineer made a recording that was not broadcast until the next day when they returned to Chicago.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

69 Years ago tonight:

War of the Worlds

On October 30, 1938, 69 years ago, Orson Welles and his Mercury Theatre on the Air troupe broadcast their radio adaptation of War of the Worlds. Infamously, his production was a bit too realistic. Many listeners thought the broadcast was real and that the earth was actually being invaded by martians.

Click on the link and go on over. It is, of course all sound so you can let it play in the background as Brian Saint-Paul suggests. [InsideCatholic has the link to Part 1 (above) of a seven part group needed to enjoy the entire War of the Worlds radio show. All the parts are posted on YouTube by huisoflondon at huisoflondon's Videos.]

If I remember the story as to why so many were sucked into this fiction correctly, it was because another very popular radio show on a different network ran late and people didn’t tune in until after Welles finished his intro. Having missed the set-up, they believed the broadcast to be real. Thus, when the newscaster begins to “interrupt” the music with “bulletins” they were sucked into the fictional “war” and panic ensued.

Remember, too, that back in 1939, there was no TV. People were encouraged to use their imagination when listening to radio dramas. Just two years earlier, at Lakehurst, New Jersey, the dirigible Hindenburg burned as live broadcasts carried the action to all the world but especially the east coast. ("Oh! The humanity!") The President of the United States regularly used the radio to address the nation in his “Fireside Chats.” The nation was conditioned to believe what they heard as news when it was broadcast via the radio. And Orson Welles’ crew did a great job of imitating the normal broadcasts of the day.

Under the weather

I gotta bad head cold--AAAH...AAAH...

And it's creating so much pressure--AAAH...AAAH...AAAACHHOOO in my sinuses that I feel like I ran face first into the wall. Several times.


I hate head colds. (But not as much as the walking pneumonia I had last fall!)

I was moving stuff around in the basement yesterday and kicked up all manner of cat fur and dander that I'm sure contained cat spittle (the true cause of cat allergies is the saliva)and I started to sneeze then. Just once or twice-at a time. I thought little of it because of the dust, but this morning I awoke to find half my head had solidified. The sinuses on my right side were packed. A little later I sneezed 7 or 8 times in a row. None of those little aachoos for me. No mine are like a cannon going off. Miraculously I didn't break any windows or laptop monitors. I did see the newspapers and a Lands End catalog fly across the room as the cats run for cover, however. Afterwards, BOTH sides of my head were packed solidly. I had a splitting headache above and below both eyes. The eyes themselves felt like they might belong to Marty Feldman. There was so much pressure behind them I feared they might pop out if I sneezed again. Breathing through my nose was impossible. I took a decongestant but it failed. We had a spicy hot lunch and I inhaled the fumes as best I could and that failed. Finally, although I didn't want to do so, I tried the 24-Hour nasal spray. That finally worked--a little. I'm still sneezing occasionally. I'll pay for it all tomorrow when the spray wears off and I get a rebound affect that will make this morning seem like heaven unless the damn cold goes away.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Red Sox Sweep WS

I see on the news this morning that the BoSox have won the World Series having defeated the Rockies 4-3 last night to complete a four game sweep. While not much of a fan of either team, I suppose it's a good thing that they were able to bring the Major League baseball season to a close before the NHL season was more than three weeks old and even before the NBA started playing regular season games. (With a playoff system that allows virtually everybody in--Knicks excepted--I can't say "games that count" for the NBA.)

My pet peeve re: the World Series:

Why the heck can't they play the weekend games during the day? Are the networks and MLB offices so afraid of competing with college and pro football that they dare not go head to head. It's bad enough the weekday games are played at night and run 'til nearly midnight. The same can be said about the playoff games.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Cha-cha-changes! The Post Week 9 Polls

As predicted, the top firmed up while the middle and bottom got reshuffled—a lot. Below are the AP Writers’/Coaches’ Polls along with this week’s opponents for each team.

#1 Ohio State (9-0, 5-0) plays NR/#19 Wisconsin (7-2, 3-2) at home.

#2 Boston College (8-0, 4-0) is at home to Florida State (5-3, 2-3).

#3 LSU (7-1, 4-1) plays at #17/18 Alabama (6-2, 4-1).

#4 Oregon (7-1, 4-1) plays at #6 Arizona State (8-0, 5-0).

#5 Oklahoma (7-1, 3-1) hosts Texas A&M (6-3, 3-2).

#6 Arizona State (8-0, 5-0) hosts #4 Oregon (7-1, 4-1).

#7 West Virginia (7-1, 2-1) hosts Louisville (5-4, 2-2).

#8 Kansas (8-0, 4-0) hosts Nebraska (4-5, 1-4).

#9 Missouri (7-1, 3-1) plays at Colorado (5-4, 3-2)

#10 Georgia (6-2, 4-2) hosts Troy (6-2, 5-0 in the Sun Belt)

#11/13 Virginia Tech (6-2, 3-1) plays at Georgia Tech (5-3, 2-3) on Thursday night.

#12/11 Hawaii (8-0, 5-0) is IDLE this week.

#13/15 Southern California (6-2, 3-2) hosts Oregon State (5-3, 3-2).

#14/12 Texas (7-2, 3-2) travels to Oklahoma State (5-3, 3-1)

#15/14 Michigan (7-2, 5-0) plays at Michigan State (5-4, 1-4).

#16/20 Connecticut (7-1, 3-0) hosts Rutgers (5-3, 2-2).

#17/18 Alabama (6-2, 4-1) hosts #3 LSU (7-1, 4-1).

#18/17 Florida (5-3, 3-3) hosts Vanderbilt (5-3, 2-3).

#19/16 Auburn (6-3, 4-2) hosts Tennessee Tech (4-5, 2-4 in the Ohio Valley Conference).

#20/21 South Florida (6-2, 1-2) is hope to Cincinnati (6-2, 1-2).

#21/NR Wake Forest (6-2, 4-1) plays at Virginia (7-2, 4-1)

#22 Boise State (7-1, 4-0) hosts San Jose State (3-5, 2-2)

#23/25 South Carolina (6-3, 3-3) plays at Arkansas (5-3, 1-3).

#24/NR Tennessee (5-3, 3-2) hosts La.-Lafayette (1-7, 1-3 in the Sun Belt).

#25/24 Clemson (6-2, 3-2) plays at Duke (1-7, 0-5).

NR/19 Wisconsin (7-2, 3-2) plays at #1 Ohio State (9-0, 5-0).

NR/23 Kentucky (6-3, 2-3) is IDLE

Want to see crazy?

Come watch an incredible end to the Trinity vs. Millsaps college football game.

At This Goes To 11: Cal/Stanford Redux?

Just for Fun

From Theo Spark we have this funny:
Students at a local school were assigned to read 2 books, "Titanic" & "My Life" by Bill Clinton.

Ther can be only one (?)

Every team that went into the week undefeated (5 of them) played this weekend and every one of them won their games.

Ohio State is now 9-0.

Boston College improved to 8-0.

Arizona State is also 8-0.

Kansas too is 8-0.

Hawaii is a perfect 8-0.

We NEED a huge volcanic eruption
(or two)

My wife reported that she saw this story on Anak Krakatoa creep across the bottom of the screen on one of this morning’s news shows. I couldn’t help but think that should the “Son of Krakatoa” live up to its Dad’s performance of 1883, some of the concerns of Global Warming might be put on the back burner for a decade or so. The ash of the 1883 eruption, spewed into the upper atmosphere, has been credited with a drop in the global temperatures in 1.2 degrees Celsius.

While not quite as impressive as the 1815 eruption of Mount Tambora which created the “Year Without a Summer,” it (Krakatoa) is still indicative of the power of nature.

[On a side note: I wonder if people of the St. Lawrence Valley wondered if they had pissed off Mother Nature in 1816? Or did they go about trying to figure out what they had done to cause the drop in temperature?]

I would be interested in seeing what affect the smoke and ash of the wildfires out west have on temperatures. On one hand you have a tremendous amount of CO2 released into the atmosphere and on the other there’s all the reflective surface of the atmospheric dust sending sunlight back to space.

Brrr! (once more)

Autumn has truly arrived here at the Aerie. Oh, we've had the colored leaves and all that jazz for a few weeks, but this morning the thermometer registered 35 degrees and tonight it's supposed to get even colder--perhaps down to 25.

The wind howled outside all evening as it blew from the north-northwest at upwards to 25 mph with gusts going even higher. The wind has knocked many of the leaves off the trees though there are many more that haven't changed color yet.

Today promises to be a bit less breezy with lots of sunshine but the temperature will struggle to get above 45.

Week 9 Results

Things were a bit saner in the college football world this weekend. There were still a few upsets—sort of—but for the most part, games went pretty much as the rankings would have predicted. Higher ranked teams beat lower ranked teams (mostly) and ranked teams beat unranked teams (for the most part). It would appear that the races for conference titles and slots in the various bowls are really tightening up. Still, was there anyone out there that figured UConn to be a major force in the BIG EAST?

In reporting the outcomes, I’ll be using the AP/Coaches’ Polls.

#1 Ohio State (9-0, 5-0) went to Happy Valley and took care of business defeating the #24/22 Penn State Nittany Lions (6-3, 3-3) by a very businesslike 37-17.

#2 Boston College (8-0, 4-0) faced their toughest challenge to date in #8/9 Virginia Tech in Blacksburg…in the rain…and came away victorious, 14-10, by scoring twice in the final minutes.

#3 LSU (7-1, 4-1) had the week off.

#4 Oklahoma (7-1, 3-1) also had the week off.

#5 Oregon hosted #9/8 USC and pretty much put the Trojans to rest in the PAC 10. With the 24-17 victory, Oregon improves to 7-1, 4-1 in the PAC 10, while the Trojans fall to 6-2, 3-2.

#6 West Virginia (7-1, 2-1) defeated #25/NR Rutgers 31-3. The loss drops RU to 5-3, 2-2.

#7 Arizona State kept its perfect season going (8-0, 5-0) by defeating #18/20 Cal 31-20. The loss drops Cal to 5-3, 2-3.

#8/9 Virginia Tech lost to #2 Boston College 14-10.

#9/8 USC lost to #5 Oregon 24-17.
#10/11 Florida fell to #20/19 Georgia in a spirited game 42-30. Florida is now 5-3, 3-3 in the SEC while Georgia improves to 6-2, 4-2.

#11/12 Southern Florida lost for the second consecutive week. This time the UConn Huskies put the hammer to the Bulls 22-15. UConn now stands alone atop the BIG EAST (they beat Louisville last week) with a 7-1, 4-0 record. USF falls to 6-2 and 1-2 and may have gone from #2 in the nation to out of the BIG EAST title chase in two short weeks.

#12/10 Kansas (8-0, 4-0) defeated Texas A&M (6-3, 3-2) 19-11 maintaining their perfect season.

#13 Missouri (7-1, 3-1) trounced Iowa State (1-8, 05) by a score of 42-28.

#14/15 Kentucky (6-3, 2-3), a team that was flying high a few weeks ago, took it on the chin from Mississippi State (5-4, 2-3) by a 31-14 score.

#15/17 South Carolina(6-3, 3-3) found itself losing to Tennessee (5-3, 3-2) when place kicker Daniel Lincoln kicked one field goal to tie the game with 5 seconds left in regulation and then another to win in overtime 27-24.

#16/14 Hawaii (6-0, 5-0) creamed New Mexico State (4-4, 1-2) when Colt Brennan threw for 425 yards and 6 TDs. Brennan is now in second place with 119 career touchdown passes just two behind Ty Detmer of the 1988-91 BYU team.

#17/16 Texas (7-2, 3-2) edged passed Nebraska (4-5, 1-4) 28-25.

#18/20 Cal dropped their contest to #7 Arizona State 31-20.

#19/21 Michigan (7-2, 5-0) rolled over Minnesota (1-8, 0-5) 34-10 as they continue to shine after an inauspicious 0-2 start.

#20/19 Georgia upset #10/11 Florida 42-30.

#21/18 Virginia (7-2, 4-1) lost to unranked North Carolina State (3-5, 1-3) 29-24.

#22/24 Alabama (6-2, 4-1) had the week off.

#23 Auburn (6-3, 4-2) defeated Mississippi (2-7, 0-6) by a score of 17-3.

#24/22 Penn State dropped its game to #1 Ohio State 37-17.

#25/NR Rutgers lost to #6 West Virginia 31-3.

NR/#25 Wisconsin (7-2, 3-2) drubbed Indiana (5-4, 2-4) 33-3.

Altogether 9 of the AP top 25 lost this week. Most of those were in the middle of the pack (numbers 8, 9, 10, 11, 14, and 15) so expect a reshuffling of the order from number 8 on down. However I don’t foresee any change of the top 7 teams when the new rankings come out this evening.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

West Virginia trounces Rutgers, 31-3

Rutgers R.small

The #6 West Virginia Mountaineers came north to Piscataway, NJ and Rutgers Stadium to take on their BIG EAST rival the Scarlet Knights. After knocking off the #2 team in the form of South Florida last week and playing WVU to a triple overtime loss last December, the Scarlet Knights must have thought they could pull off yet another big upset. It was not to be.

Steve Slaton ran for just 73 yards but scored 3 TDs and Patrick White ran for 156 yards and 1 TD as the Mountaineers beat the Knights for the 13th consecutive time.

Junior Ray Rice rushed 30 times for Rutgers and gained 142 yards. Rice became the first player in RU history to rush for more than 1,000 yards in three seasons. Unfortunately for RU, Mike Teel suffered 2 INTs and RU lost 2 fumbles in a game that was played in a heavy rain for the first half. While the rain stopped at halftime, the field remained wet.

WVU improves to 7-1, 2-1 in BIG EAST.
RU falls to 5-3, 2-2.

Full story here.

New Truck

Terry and I had to leave the house this afternoon to pick up the new Toyota Tundra and therefore we missed watching the West Virginia vs Rutgers football game—thank goodness. But, more about that debacle later.

A couple of pictures.

First: what we traded in:
2000 Silverado
2000 Chevy Silverado 2500 with 158,000+ miles

And what we purchased:
2007 Tundra
2007 Toyota Tundra (It’s actually a very dark green but in the overcast skies it looks more slate grey.)

More farookin rain!

Since I returned to the Aerie from the Bolt Hole on Monday it has been a steady—or nearly steady—period of overcast and rainy weather. After a summer of gloriously warm ad sunny weather that led to declarations of drought, it seems ole Ma Nature is trying to make it all up to us in one month. That rain that was in Blacksburg, VA the other night for the BC vs VT game has slid northward along the coast and reaches far enough inland to soak us here in north-central PA. After a very brief respite from the rains of Tuesday and Wednesday morning, the cloud cover arrived late Thursday night. All day Friday the overcast sky prevented the temperature from fluctuating much and the 7 AM reading of 50 degrees remained about the same all day. It was still 50 degrees whenever I checked throughout the day and at 7 PM. The rain didn’t start to fall until around 3:30-4:00 Friday afternoon but it has been steady ever since. Forecasters are calling for well over an inch. The bird bath is overflowing. Earthworms are drowning. It’s quite depressing.

I know, from looking at the AOL Welcome page, that the US is in dire straits as far as water is concerned. (The Drudge Report also posted the story: Much of U.S. Could See a Water Shortage ) Reservoirs are at record lows, lakes and rivers are drying up, etc. But looking at where much of the “shortage” is, I can’t help but wonder if it’s not because:

1) More people have moved to desert environments (read the southwest) where there is precious little water in the best of times

2) We haven’t had a real hurricane season on the east coast in years (Katrina and Rita were NOT along the east coast—they passed to the west of the areas of major concern—Georgia, the Carolinas, etc., and the last two years haven’t even seen a hurricane come close to Florida). Hurricanes used to be the primary source of water in the Everglades, for instance. Oh, and all that ditch digging to drain swamps back in the ‘50s—not a good idea after all.

3) NYC still hasn’t stopped all the water leakage in its vast system and has absolutely no way of monitoring how much is lost/wasted as it pumps water from the upstate reservoirs to homes and apartments. And how many of those homes and apartments in the city have meters, anyway?

4) With all the growth in human population and the corresponding need for freshwater, why has there not been a massive move to dredge the existing reservoirs to increase their capacity or to create more reservoirs? Wouldn’t a period of low water be the ideal time to do so? If coal miners can level mountains, couldn’t much of the same strip mining equipment be used to scoop out reservoirs?

5) Why do city planners in some of the southwest permit green lawns of Kentucky Blue Grass in desert environments? Why do they permit golf courses to plant grasses of any type? Or trees that are not native to the region? Until some or all of these issues are faced, people will simply look around and wonder what the heck the alarmists are talking about. Water shortage? Why, look at the pictures taken from the blimp at the PGA tournaments in February. Can’t be a water shortage. The course was green as could be and every house had a swimming pool.

Ya know, my fishing buddies and I have done some miraculous things re: water shortages. Every time we go to northern Quebec we’re warned about the dry conditions, be careful of any outside fires, watch your cigarettes, yada, yada, yada.

And 9 times out of 10, before the float plane is out of sight, the clouds will roll in and it will rain for the entire week. Perhaps we should contact some Chambers of Commerce here in the states and see if we can’t arrange a couple of fishing trips. We won’t even charge them anything beyond lodging, boat, bait and gasoline if we don’t produce any rain in a week—or maybe two. (Of course, we would want a disclaimer stating that we are not responsible for any damage caused by excessive rain, lightening, tornado or hurricane that might occur while we were in residence.)

Wait a minute, it stopped raining outside and I can see some nearly blue sky to the west. I’m going outside. Got to run a few errands before I go pick up my new truck.

See ya later.

UPDATE: The rain gauge must have sprung a leak. After about 18 hours of steady rain, it had just 0.3 inches of water in it. That just seems...wrong.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Baseball depends on Global Warming

I just checked the weather for Denver. It will be around 53 degrees on Saturday and 66 degrees Sunday. But they aren't playing the damn games during the day. No, in search of the almighty revenue dollars, the two games will be played at 8 PM Eastern Daylight Saving Time. Make that somewhere around 6 PM local time--just about sundown. Nighttime lows are forecast to be 39 degrees on Saturday and 42 degrees on Sunday.

And if the game on Monday is needed, the daytime temp will be 69 but the night low: 43.

Thank goodness Global Warming has been kind to Denver.

I hope they all have those little heat packs in the back pocket so they'll be able to grip the ball to make a throw.

On another note. Remember the Cleveland Indians--the team that beat the Yankees but lost to the Red Sox? Remember? They get to open their major league season next year on March 31--in Cleveland--on the shores of Lake Erie. Lake effect, anyone?

Let's Hear It for Freedom!

Drew M. posting at Ace’s placereports upon an effort to combat the Myanmar regime that took down some unarmed saffron clad monks a few weeks ago.

So, ladies, shuck'em for freedom!

Of course, the NY Slimes would probably call this torture.

Full news article here: Myanmar democracy activists pin hopes on 'Panty Power'

Oh yeah, Congrats to The Red Sox too.

The Boston Red Sox took a 2-0 lead in the World Series last night with a 2-1 victory over the Colorado Rockies at Fenway Park.

I'm sure that the victory left many wondering if the Damn Sox were going to win the whole thing...again!

The two teams move on to Colorado. Hopefully, there won't be too much snow in Denver.

Congratulations to #2 Boston College

Three consecutive weeks the Number 2 college football team lost. For 59 minutes and 49 seconds last night in a steady downpour in Blacksburg, Virginia, it looked like it might be four weeks. That is until Matt Ryan was able to scramble away from the rushing Hokie defense and through a 24-yard TD pass to Andre Callender with just 11 seconds left to complete an improbably comeback and give the #2 Eagles a 14-10 victory over #8/9 Virginia Tech.

BC trailed VT 10-0 with just 4:17 remaining in the fourth quarter when they took over on their own 9-yard line. Finally getting into a rhythm, Ryan was able to march the BC offense 92 yards in just 2:06 in a drive that ended with a 16-yard pass to Rich Gunnell.

After the extra point made it 10-7 Hokies, BC recovered an on-sides kick at their own 34. Boston College had just 2:11 on the clock and 66 yards to go to pull out a victory. Could Ryan and crew do it? The answer was yes. Completing passes to Ryan Purvis, Brandon Robinson, Rich Gunnell, Kevin Challenger, Robinson again and finally Andre Callender, Ryan again marched the offense down the field scoring the winning TD with just 11 seconds.

It had to kill Doug Flutie to miss this game. He was up in Canada for induction ceremonies to the Canadian Football League Hall of Fame. It would have been fun seeing his reaction to Ryan’s comeback drives.

Prior to the final four minutes, it was a sloppy game with neither teams offense doing much in the slop. Both teams punted 9 times. Together they put the ball on the turf 8 times with VT losing two of their five fumbles. Virginia Tech had total net offense of just 265 yards while BC managed a meager 317, most of which they had in those final two drives.

Virginia Tech is now 6-2, 3-1 and finds itself in second place in the ACC’s Coastal Division behind Virginia (7-1, 4-0). They play again next Thursday night at Georgia Tech.

Boston College improves to 8-0, 4-0 and stands atop the ACC’s Atlantic Division. They face Florida State up in Boston on November 3.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Here we go again!

This evening (Thursday) marks the beginning of another wild weekend of college football.

Last Thursday Rutgers knocked off #2 South Florida 30-27. Tonight #2 is playing again; this time in the shape of undefeated Boston College (7-0, 3-0. Their opponent is #8/9 Virginia Tech (6-1,3-0) in what promises to be a real shootout battle in Blacksburg.

This will be the Eagles' first real test this season and it should be a good one going up against the Hokies and Beamer Ball.

Both teams have been idle since October 13 so they've had plenty of prep time. If the Eagles truly aspire to soar in their current lofty position, they will have to beware of the special teams.

Personally, I think both teams are over rated. Top 25 material? Sure. #2 and #8? Not really. Just a good ACC press.

Look for the Eagles to fall but it will be close. Hokies win by 5.

Seems about right.

Cat Wake Up Call:

'Cept Chester is a tad more subtle. Instead of a bat, he uses that loud purr and a very, very sharp cheese grater he calls "tongue" applied to any and every inch of bare flesh he can reach. Even if it means climbing under the covers to get to it.

(Seen at Crouchy Old Cripple.)

That's Entertainment!?

Do you think Redford and the Hollyweird crowd will claim they are being censored?

Audiences reject Iraq war — at the box office

Both "In the Valley of Elah" and, more recently, "Rendition" drew minuscule crowds upon their release, which doesn't bode well for the ongoing stream of films critical of the Iraq war and the Bush administration's wider war on terror.

"Rendition," which features three Oscar winners in key roles, grossed $4.1 million over the weekend in 2,250 screens for a ninth-place finish. A re-release of "The Nightmare Before Christmas" beat it, and it's 14 years old.


‘Tis St. Crispin’s Day.

Celebrate Victory on Crispin's Day By Judd Magilnick at The American Spectator

If you’re reading this in English (and of course you are) quaff a pint of ale in celebration of the feats and contributions of English speaking peoples everywhere and stand tall. Should you speak no other language, be not cowed by those who would belittle you for uncouth. Merely remind them of the multitude of times it was an English speaker or an English speaking force that came to the rescue of the world or some little faraway corner of it. Be it cures for disease or despots, English speaking people have stepped forward.

Remember, too, that those who say you are uncouth for speaking just one language, and who often brag of being multi-lingual themselves, learned English as their second language. Would they have done that if English wasn’t such a vital voice for freedom and liberty and dreams worldwide?

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Papa's Got a Brand New Toy!

(Well, almost.)

Upon arriving home from the Bolt Hole, I started to ask Terry about if we could get a new truck to replace my 2000 Silverado 2500. I started off slow by telling her about some difficulty I sensed with the transmission and how the tailgate/bed connection was giving me a tough time. But before I was through, Terry suggested we go take a look at some trucks. (I had hinted a couple of weeks ago and gotten THAT look. (You know, the one that means, "How'd you like to sleep on the porch all winter?") Well, never let it be said that i would let an opportunity like this pass me up. I went on line and did some shopping. I looked at both the Siverado 2500HD and the Toyota Tundra SR5.

This morning we took the Silverado down to my mechanic in Mansfield and dropped it off so he could change the oil and take the rusted running boards off. (After 7 winters of NJ and NY salt I was fearful the tubular running boards might give way every time I got into the truck. Besides, they were starting to look like hell.)

While the truck was in the shop, we went shopping. We needed a truck capable of hauling our 27' Wilderness travel trailer (7500 pounds empty) and that would have some room inside as well. That meant a 6L engine in the Chevy Silverado 2500HD or the 5.7L in the Toyota Tundra SR5. Either would have to have the equivalent of an extended cab, i.e. an bench seat in the back of the cab. We also wanted bucket seats for the driver and navigator.

First we went to the bank to see what we could qualify for in the way of a new car loan. The bank man ran our info and came back with a credit score that was in the 760s. No problem there.

Next stop was the local Chevy dealer. He had a few '07s in the lot and an '08 Silverado 2500HD extended cab that I knew about from my on-line search that would fit our need of towing the trailer. After looking over the '08 we went inside and started talking money. Terry's dad worked for GM at the Linden, NJ plant for over 40 years and although he has been gone for nearly a decade, we still qualify for the GM Family plan. As a result the price was pretty good. But, like all GM products the damn thing came with free OnStar for a year and that silly little antennae on the roof forever. To continue OnStar service beyond the first year would cost an additional $300 or more annually. I told the dealer we'd think about it.

We picked up our 2000 Silverado from the garage and then went to the Toyota dealer up in Sayre, PA.

There was one '07 Tundra SR5 with an extended cab (they call it a double cab) in the lot that also had all the requirements for towing our trailer. It also had an off-road package (so did the '08 Silverado) and 18" wheels. We took it for a test drive while they took a look at our trade-in. It drove well on the back roads and also on the small stretch of Route 17 that we ventured out on. When we got back to the dealer's we started talking money. With the trade-in, dealer incentives, manufacturer incentives and what not, the price was almost identical to the '08 Silverado. But then we were given another choice. Instead of the $2000 manufacturer's incentive we could opt for 0% financing on a 48-month "loan." A little quick math proved that we would save far more over the 48-months on the 0% than we lost in the $2000 rebate. (The bank was offering 6.25% over the same period. GM would have been around 9%.)

The end result: On Saturday--possibly Friday--I'll be driving a Dark Green Toyota Tundra.

After years of nothing but Chevy vehicles, I feel like a bit of a traitor, but the Toyota is made in Princeton, Indiana. The Silverado? Could be Michigan, or maybe Canada or even Mexico.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


The Aerie has been invaded!

We've got no cluster flies (too little lawn for the earthworm parasites?), but the Lady Bugs have found their way into the Aerie and are crawling all over the windows. There must be a hundred or more. They seem less active today with the overcast, rainy sky but yesterday they were all over the outside green metal trim of all the doors and windows.

I've no idea how they got inside since everything is caulked tighter than a drum but inside they have come. No doubt they will be here until they die or until spring arrives and they find their way back out. *sigh*

Gutters on the log home

One of the things not included in the package that became our log home was gutters. We decided, in part because of cost and in part because of other priorities like finishing the basement, to put off on their purchase and installation. And for the bulk of this spring and summer it was a gamble that paid off.

Gutters are necessary to direct water away from the foundation and to prevent the splash of water back on to the first and second course of logs. We have also discovered tat the roof valley in the front pours water down on to the newly landscaped (well, dirt filled area) and creates erosion. It also would soak anyone coming to the front door.

So it's time for gutters. We called two seamless gutter companies in the area and got estimates. They were within $50. Then we called a couple of the references they provided. Today I called to have one of the companies put us on their schedule. They should be here someday next week to do the job.

We'll have 6" seamless gutters and downspouts in Forest Green along the L-shape that forms the front of the garage, the entry and the small side of the living room by the chimney. The same will be in the rear of the garage, laundry room and guest bedroom. Another small section will be up on the dormer and will protect the small section of roof beneath. Only the covered porch will have no gutter--which is fine since it is above the deck and a long ways from the foundation.

Rain, lots of rain.

Sorry southeast. Sorry San Diego County. The rain is falling from St Louis, MO right on through Syracuse-Rome-Utica, NY. (I love putting those three city names in one lump like that.)

I'm glad I drove back to PA yesterday. If I had waited, I'd be in the middle of this mess that will be dropping 1 to 1.25 inches of rain here at the Aerie today and tonight.

So far in the month of October we have had 1.55, 0.85, 0.625 and 0.2 inches of rain, or 3.425 inches all together. While that may sound like a pretty good amount, the previous four months were well below average so the ground is just soaking this water up and is beginning to seep it back out again. There are several seeps on the hillside behind the Aerie that were dry all summer. They are once again "flowing" water upon the slope.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Back in PA

After ten days [ed. Really? 10 days? me- 'Fraid so.] at the Bolt Hole I packed it in this morning and headed back to the Aerie. Being in the woods almost every morning and most afternoons (sometimes you have chores to do or it rains or people pass away on the trail) I had seen no deer. Oh, there were signs that deer had been around during the night--like the tracks in the lawn right behind the cabin--but I had not actually spotted one while sitting on stand or still hunting. Not even a tail as one bounded away from me.

Still, aside from one hunter's death, the all too warm temperatures most afternoons, and the lack of deer or bear, it wasn't a bad ten days. The season's not over up there yet. It doesn't end until December 2 and I'll be going back up in a week or so. The weather is supposed to get much cooler as two cold fronts are poised to pass through in the next week. Maybe that will get the deer moving about a bit more.

Post Week 8 Polls
Heading into the stretch

College football’s polls were released on Sunday evening along with the BCS standings. Quite a few chances have occurred.

First, in the AP and Coaches Polls, we say goodbye to four teams who may yet return. Last week’s #20 Tennessee, #22 Texas Tech, #23 Cincinnati, and #25 Kansas State lost their games. (That may be an understatement for what happened to Tennessee against Alabama, where the score was 41-17, but it will do.) These teams have been replaced by four who have been here before only to fall or who are completely new to these lofty heights this year. Virginia, Alabama, Penn State, Rutgers and Wisconsin have been added to the polls. (The last two share the Number 25 slot in the two polls being ranked #25 in one but unranked in the other.)

Here are the new rankings with the AP/Coaches ranking and their opponents this week.

#1 Ohio State (8-0, 4-0) remains on top but plays at #24/22 Penn State (6-2, 2-2) and you just know Joe Paterno will want to challenge the Buckeyes' position.

#2 Boston College (7-0, 3-0) will finally play a “quality” opponent when they travel to Blacksburg, VA to face #8/9 Virginia Tech (6-1, 3-0).

#3 LSU (7-1, 3-0) is idle this week as they prepare to travel to currently #22/24 Alabama (6-2, 4-1), also idle this week, on November 3.

#4 Oklahoma (7-1, 3-0) travels to Iowa State (1-7, 0-4) I'm bad! The Sooners are idle..

#5 Oregon (6-1, 3-1) travels down the coast to play #9/8 Southern California (6-1, 3-1).

#6 West Virginia (6-1, 1-1) heads into the lion’s den that is home to #24/NR Rutgers (5-2, 2-1).

#7 Arizona State (7-0, 4-0) puts its undefeated season on the line when they host #18/20 Cal (5-2, 2-2).

#8/9 Virginia Tech (6-1, 3-0) hosts #2 Boston College (7-0, 3-0) in an ACC battle.

#9/8 USC (6-1, 3-1) hosts #5 Oregon (6-1, 3-1) in a PAC 10 battle as both chase AZ State.

#10/11 Florida (5-2, 3-2) crosses the border to visit #20-19 Georgia (5-2, 3-2).

#11/12 South Florida (6-1, 1-1) will be at UConn (6-1, 2-0) trying to make the BIG EAST even more interesting.

#12/10 Kansas (7-0, 3-0) goes west to face Texas A&M (6-2, 3-1).

#13 Missouri (6-1, 2-1) hosts Texas Tech (6-2, 2-2).

#14/15 Kentucky (6-2, 2-2) is at home for Mississippi State (4-4, 1-3).

#15/17 South Carolina (6-2, 3-2) heads to Tennessee (4-3, 2-2).

#16/14 Hawaii (7-0, 4-0) goes back to work when they host New Mexico State (4-4, 1-2).

#17/16 Texas (6-2, 2-2) will be home against Nebraska (4-4, 1-3).

#18/20 Cal (5-2, 2-2) heads into the desert to take on #7 Arizona State (7-0, 4-0).

#19/21 Michigan (6-2, 4-0) hopes to continue its six game winning streak when they host Minnesota (1-7, 0-4).

#20/19 Georgia (5-2, 3-2) is at home against #10/11 Florida (5-2, 3-2).

#21/18 Virginia (7-1, 4-0) travels to North Carolina State (2-5, 0-3).

#22/24 Alabama (6-2, 4-1) is idle as they look forward to #3 LSU on November 3rd.

#23 Auburn (5-3, 3-2) hosts Mississippi (2-6, 0-5).

#24/22 Penn State (6-2, 3-2) hopes Happy Valley will be as they host #1 Ohio State (8-0, 4-0).

#25/ NR Rutgers (5-2, 2-1) hopes to avenge last year’s triple OT loss in West Virginia when they host the #6 Mountaineers (6-1, 1-1).

NR/#25 Wisconsin (6-2, 2-2) hosts Indiana (5-3, 2-3).

The BCS ranking of the top 10 teams is slightly different than those above:
#1 Ohio State
#2 Boston College
#3 LSU
#4 Arizona State
#5 Oregon
#6 Oklahoma
#7 West Virginia
#8 Virginia Tech
#9 Kansas
#10 South Florida

College football being what it is, expect these positions to be somewhat ephemeral. That will be especially true this week as 12 of the 26 teams I listed above will be playing one another and, obviously, six of them are fated to lose and fall down/out of the rankings.

There Can be only One! (maybe)
A Post Week 8 Report

With South Florida losing to Rutgers, 30-27, last Thursday, only five undefeated teams remain.

Ohio State is 8-0
Boston College is 7-0
Arizona State is 7-0
Kansas is 7-0
Hawaii is 7-0

BC has the toughest match this week as they go on the road to face #8/9 Virginia Tech (6-1). Personally, I don't think the Eagles will survive this test.

Arizona State is at home against #18/19 Cal (5-2). Cal has been so erratic this year that this is a tough one to predict. Could go either way.

Ohio State is going to Happy Valley to face #24/22 Penn State (6-2). If the Buckeyes play like they did in the second half against Michigan State they'll be in trouble.

Kansas is on the road to Colorado (4-4). Taking care of business.

Hawaii is at home against New Mexico State (4-4). After having a week off, expect Colt Brennen to have a big day. Again.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Week 8 Results.

Week 8 is over and while it may have seemed to be less wacky than the previous two weeks I contend that it lived up to the wild and wacky NCAA College Football reputation. Let’s take a look at the outcomes, shall we.

First off, of the 25 ranked teams according to the AP writers’ poll, five teams were idle (#3 Boston College, #11 Virginia Tech, #12 Arizona State, #17 Hawaii and #21 Georgia).

That leaves 20 that played. Of those 20 teams, six played other ranked teams meaning at least three ranked teams were doomed to lose. #5 LSU beat #18 Auburn 30-24 in the final minute. #8 Kentucky lost to #14 Florida in a shootout 45-31. #16 Missouri beat up on #22 Texas Tech 41-10.

So 14 of the top 25 teams played unranked opponents. How did they fare? Well six of them lost. #2 South Florida got beat by Rutgers 30-27. #6 South Carolina fell to Vanderbilt 17-6. # 10 Cal lost to UCLA 30-21. #20 Tennessee got rolled over by the Tide of Alabama 41-17. #23 Cincinnati fell to Pittsburgh 24-17. And #25 Kansas State lost a squeaker to Oklahoma State 41-39.

A total of seven of the 20 top 25 teams that played, 35%, lost to lower ranked or unranked opponents. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why they play the games.

Full Results: (Those in red are for ranked teams that lost.)

#1 Ohio State held off Michigan State, 24-17, to remain undefeated at 8-0.

#2 South Florida lost to Rutgers, 30-27.

#3 Boston College, idle. Lucky them.

#4 Oklahoma survived Iowa State, 17-7.

#5 LSU pulled a fast one on #18 Auburn, 30-24.

#6 South Carolina got ambushed by Vanderbilt, 17-6.

#7 Oregon whipped Washington, 55-34.

#8 Kentucky fell to #14 Florida, 45-31.

#9 West Virginia beat up on Mississippi State, 38-13.

#10 Cal lost to UCLA, 30-21.

#11 Virginia Tech, idle.

#12 Arizona State, idle.

#13 USC beat hapless Notre Dame, 38-0. They had a tougher time with their flight ot South Bend.

#14 Florida beat #8 Kentucky, 45-31.

#15 Kansas edged Colorado, 19-14.

#16 Missouri was all over #22 Texas Tech, 41-10.

#17 Hawaii, idle.

#18 Auburn fell to #5 LSU at the end, 30-24.

#19 Texas took advantage of Baylor, 31-10.

#20 Tennessee was drowned by the Crimson Tide of Alabama, 41-17.

#21 Georgia, idle.

#22 Texas Tech was devoured by Missouri, 41-10.

#23 Cincinnati fell to Pittsburgh, 24-17.

#24 Michigan beat Illinois, 27-17.

#25 Kansas State lost to Oklahoma State in a close one, 41-29.

In other games of interest, Virginia barely got past Maryland, 18-17, and Penn State out dueled Indiana, 36-31. Both Virginia and Penn State were in the Coaches’ Poll Top 25 going into this week.

Saturday, October 20, 2007


You know, somewhere along the line I have misplaced a whole week. I was just starting to put together my report for this week's college football games when I realized it was week 8 and not week 7. I called each of the last three or four weeks incorrectly.

I was puzzled this afternoon while watching the Ohio State/Michigan State game I heard one of the announcers say week 8. The tally sheet I was using to record the scores that flashed on the screen and which I held in front of me said week 7.

Now I really should have caught this mistake on my own what with Ohio State being 7-0 going into week 7 (an impossibility if there ever was one) but, no, I was probably too stupified by the lack of deer I've been seeing ad all the fresh country air I've been getting while sitting in the woods daydreaming.

I'll make the correction this week and beg your forgiveness. I will not be going back to change the errors in the previous posts. I'm just too damn lazy to do that. Note, however, that I am acknowledging the error even when no one else thought to call me on it.

Tragedy Strikes Again

I’m troubled by what I have to report tonight.

If you recall, last year on opening day of the muzzle loader season in the North Zone (AKA the Adirondacks) a camp to the west had a hunter go out and not return. He passed away of a massive heart attack on the trail in the woods. Crews from the state troopers, the DEC and a friend of mine spent a good portion of the night and a few hours the next morning combing the woods before they located his body. (See my post Tragedy In the North Country for the full story.)

Today was opening day of the regular rifle season in the North Zone and it was déjà vu all over again. Except this time the hunter wasn’t in the woods. One of the hunters from the camp to the east of the Bolt Hole was going up the snowmobile trail to set up for an afternoon hunt. A second hunter left a short time afterward to catch up with him and the two were to sit while another group pushed deer in their direction.

Never happened.

As hunter number two progressed up the trail, he came upon the body of hunter number one laying in the middle of the trail. Carl, hunter number one, had died on his way up the trail. Apparently he had a heart attack.

While no search was necessary this time, the State Troopers, DEC and the local ambulance crew responded to the call and Chevy Suburbans and trucks and trailers were parked on the road at my gate for several hours while they took statements and went up the trail to retrieve Carl’s body.

I recall meeting Carl a time or two when we were both up here hunting. Until recently I wasn't up here often enough to know him real well, but he seemed the decent sort. The owners of the camp he hunted from say they had been friends for neigh on to 30 years. Carl was 58 years old. Much too young for this sort of thing. But then again, the fella who lost his life last year was only in his late forties/early fifties.


Twice in two years (three times in three if you count the older gent from further south of here mentioned in the linked post) hunters have died on the trails around the Bolt Hole. Makes me wonder if I should be going out alone.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Rutgers downs #2 South Florida 30-27

Rutgers R.small
Ray Rice rushed 39 times for 181 yards, Tiquan Underwood caught five passes for 114 yards and two TDs, and Mike Teel was 11-29 for 179 yards and 2 TDs but the big story will center around trick plays (a fake field goal for a TD) and defense. The D came up with 7 sacks and a game ending interception as they bent but didn’t break on drive after drive.

USF’s Matt Grothe was 17 of 34 for 247 yards and ran 18 times for 58 yards. But he got sacked 7 times by a gambling RU defense that just kept coming.

The last player to rush for more than 100 yards against the South Florida Bulls was—Ray Rice. On September 29, 2006, Rice ran for 202 yards in RU’s 22-20 victory over the Bulls in Tampa.

The loss ends USF unbeaten string and gives them a 6-1 record, 1-1 in the Big East. Rutgers improves to 5-2, 2-1 in the Big East.

Rutgers Wins 30-27

So, I went out again this afternoon and saw NO DEER! If this keeps up I'll have to take up a more exciting hobby--like fly tying.

I'm stuck without ESPN and in no mood to drive anywhere tonight to watch the Rutgers USF game so I've got the GameTracker from the RU web site AND the GameCenter from CBS Sports following the game for me. There's no sound and sometimes the delay between plays is unbearable but you do what you have to....

RU! Rah! Rah!

17-13 for USF at the half. USF had a TD called back after they blocked a field goal attempt. "Illegal propelling of the ball" was the call. RU managed to drive the field win the last minute for a FG.

UPDATE 2: RU scores on their first possession in the second half on a 69-yard strike from Teel to Underwood. The Knights' defense held on the first possession AND the second but they buffed the punt and USF got the ball deep in RU territory. And the defense held AGAIN! USF missed the field goal attempt from short range.

UPDATE 3: RU fakes a field goal and the holder passes for a 15-yard TD. RU now leads 27-17. Still along way to go.

UPDATE 4: With the score 30-27 in RUs favor they get the ball back with about 5 minutes to play. A long drive could kill precious minutes but Rice fumbles the ball on the RU 40 and USF recovers. When was the last time Ray Rice fumbled? Why now?

But, once again, the RU defense holds and USF punts into the end zone for a touchback. Hold on to the ball!

UPDATE 5: 1:55 on the clock and USF, down 30-27, gets the ball back on the 50-yard line. The freakin' 50-yard line! Rutgers really needs a punter.

Thank goodness for Joe Lefeged! A 12-yard sack! RU's 7th sack of the night.

And the penalties! 4th and a mile after 25 yards of penalties.

Zaire Kitchen intercepts Matt Grothe's desperation pass. RU ball with 45 seconds to go and the Bulls with no timeouts. It's over! RU wins 30-27.

Expect the Unexpected

I got up at 6 AM this morning, showered, dressed and ate my breakfast then went to sit in the woods for a couple of hours with my muzzle loader in hopes that a buck deer might wander by. That was not to be, but I did have an unexpected encounter.

Sitting on a rise amongst a stand of mature hemlocks here I could look down upon a clearing where several old logging skidways meet and through which at least one critter trail (aided by our pruning) crosses a small creek, I spied a small black critter come nosing along. It spent a few minutes at the intersection while I groped for my binoculars but just as I put them to my eyes, disappeared. Not to worry, though, it came loping along the trail that leads right to the spot at which I was sitting. Perhaps I should say it “looped” along the trail. It was a fisher and, like the overgrown weasel that they are, it has a peculiar gait. Sort of like a slinky. The rear legs come up to meet the front as the back arches and then its front legs move forward and it stretches out.

It boldly came right up the trail to where I sat, passing a mere three feet from me, paused about five feet away, and then made a left turn and headed off into the woods. I don’t believe it even was aware of my presence as it showed no signs of surprise or panic. Unlike the one pictured at the link above, this fisher was almost totally black save for a small ruff of brown around its neck. It coat was very sleek and healthy looking, too.

With a couple of these roaming around the Bolt Hole, it's little wonder that I've not seen many porcupines about. Now, if they would only do something about the red squirrels....

Oh, and I saw no deer in the four hours I sat.

Monday, October 15, 2007

No sign of deer--yet

I've spent the better part of the last three days sitting int he woods in locations I thought I might have a chance of seeing a buck stroll past. So far I'm 0-3. That is three days and no sight of a deer.

No sight of a bear either, which is sorta good news/bad news. It is still bear season but with just one shot in the muzzle loader...well, I'd just as soon pass on wounding a bear and having to track it. Besides, those things weigh a wee bit more than the deer and dragging one out of the woods would be no picnic!.

Nor have I seen any of the coyotes that kept me awake last night.

Well, there's still a couple of hours of daylight left so I'm heading back into the woods to see if my luck might change.

There Can Be Only One!

After seven weeks of play, we are down to just six undefeated teams in Division 1-A of college football and all have not played their seventh game yet.

#1 Ohio State is now 7-0 and atop virtually all the polls including the new BCS rankings. And this is supposed to be a rebuilding year? The Buckeyes face off against Michigan State on the road this week.

The University of South Florida is 6-0 and number 2 in the AP and BCS rankings. Not too shabby for a school that didn’t even have a football team 11 years ago. The Bulls are on the road to New Jersey to face Rutgers this week.

#3 Boston College is 7-0 and looking pretty strong. They’ll still be undefeated next week since they have the week off.

#12 Arizona State at 7-0 is the only undefeated team in the far west. With USC and Cal out there, who’d have thunk it. They too have the week off and so will remain undefeated.

#15 Kansas is 6-0 and they have been flying under the radar while steadily moving up in the rankings. This week they travel to Colorado.

#17 Hawaii is 7-0 and, yeah, they are even further west than Arizona State, but with their much weaker schedule do they really count? With the number of points they’ve been putting on the board…okay, they count. They take a week off from their frequent flier program and so will remain undefeated for at least one more week.

Top 25 after Week 6
plus the BCS Top 10

The new Top 25 rankings are out and there are all kinds of surprises. For the first time since 1996 both the Number 1 and Number 2 teams lost in the same week. The result of that happening ins a complete scrambling of the rankings. Neither the new #1 nor the #2 teams were ranked at the start of the season but both are now at the top and undefeated. Next week might be even more scrambling of the rankings as 15 of the 25 take their game on the road. Only 5 of the AP Top 25 play at home and 5 are idle.
As usual, I’ll give the AP Writer’s Poll and the Coaches’ Poll as well as who the next week's opponent is.

#1 Ohio State (7-0) goes on the road to Michigan State.
#2/#3 South Florida (6-0) goes to NJ to face Rutgers.
#3/#2 Boston College (7-0) is idle.
#4 Oklahoma (6-1) goes to Iowa State.
#5 LSU (6-1) hosts # 18/19 Auburn.
#6/#9 South Carolina (6-1) plays host to Vanderbilt.
#7/#6 Oregon (5-1) travels to Washington.
#8/#13 Kentucky (6-1) hosts # 14 Florida.
#9/#7 West Virginia (5-1) is back in action hosting Mississippi State.
#10/#9 California (5-1) plays at UCLA.
#11 Virginia Tech (6-1) is idle.
#12 Arizona State (7-0) is idle.
#13/#9 Southern California (5-1) travels to South Bend to play Notre Dame.
#14 Florida (4-2) travels to #8/13 Kentucky.
#15 Kansas (6-0) heads to Colorado.
#16/#17 Missouri (5-1) hosts #22/21 Texas Tech.
#17/#16 Hawaii (7-0) is idle.
#18/#19 Auburn (5-2) goes to Baton Rouge to face #5 LSU.
#19/#18 Texas (5-2) travels to Baylor.
#20/#22 Tennessee (4-2) plays at Alabama.
#21/#20 Georgia (5-2) is idle.
#22/#21 Texas Tech (6-1) travels to #16/17 Missouri.
#23 Cincinnati (6-1) travels up the Ohio River to face Pittsburgh.
#24/NR Michigan (5-2) plays at Illinois.
#25/NR Kansas State (4-2) is on the road to Oklahoma State.
NR/#24 Virginia (6-1) travels to Maryland.
NR/#25 Penn State (5-2) plays at Indiana.

And if you haven’t seen the first BCS rankings of the year:
#1 Ohio State
#2 South Florida
#3 Boston College
#4 LSU
#5 Oklahoma
#6 South Carolina
#7 Kentucky
#8 Arizona State
#9 West Virginia
#10 Oregon

Sunday, October 14, 2007

RU downs Syracuse 38-14

Rutgers R.small

Rutgers spotted Syracuse 14 points early in the first quarter then scored 24 of their own before halftime on their way to a 38-14 win over the Orange in the Carrier Dome. Playing on the road for the first time this season must have made the Knights a little nervous, especially since it was Syracuse’s Homecoming Game. Not to worry, there was more Scarlet in the stands than Orange.

Mike Teel’s first pass was intercepted and Syracuse took a 14-0 lead with less than 9 minutes off the clock but then the Rutgers offense and defense got their acts together and Syracuse failed to score the rest of the way. Teel ended the day 20 of 29 for 310 yards. Ray Rice ran for 196 yards and 3 TDs. Kenny Britt caught 6 balls for 176 yards and a TD. Tight end Kevin Brock scored on a 32-yard catch and run from Teel. Jeremy Ito had a 25-yard field goal. Also on special teams, Devin McCourtney blocked an SU punt that Julian Haynes fell on at the 1-yard line setting up one of Rice’s TDs. The RU defense sacked Andrew Robinson 6 times.

The Scarlet Knights are back home next weekend against undefeated South Florida which is now ranked #2 in the AP and #3 in the Coaches polls as well as #2 in the newly unveiled BCS Standings.

Week Six Results:
And they are still Wild!

Oo-wee! Both the #1 and #2 teams get beaten and a couple of undefeated teams have their records blemished in another wild weekend.

#1 LSU fell to 6-1 when #17 Kentucky (6-1) came from behind to tie the game with two field goals in the fourth quarter and then won the game in the third OT 43-37 when the Wildcat’s defense refused to allow the Tigers a fist down.

#2 California (5-1) lost their starting QB before the game began to a sprained ankle and then lost the game 31-28 to Oregon State.

#3 Ohio State (7-0) continued to roll and will likely be at the top of the heap next week as the Buckeyes defeated Kent State 48-3.

#4 Boston College (7-0) soared over Notre Dame 27-14 in South Bend.

#5 South Florida (6-0) demolished the University of Central Florida 64-12. It’s the Bulls 8th consecutive win and that might put them in line for the nation’s longest winning streak. UCF’s running back Kevin Smith (the best running back you’ve never heard of) entered the game leading the nation in rushing. He was averaging 172 yards per game but the Bulls’ defense held him to just 55 yards on 18 carries. Admittedly he sat most of the second half when the score got out of hand, No running back has rushed for more than 100 yards against USF since early last year when Rutgers’ Ray Rice gained 212 yards against them. The Bulls’ QB Matt Grothe was 15 for 28 for 212 yards and 2 TDs and also ran for a pair of 6-yard TDs as he rushed 16 times for 100 yards. George Salvie led the Bulls defense registering 3 tackles for a loss including one sack. This gives him a total of 20 ½ tackles for a loss and 11 ½ sacks for the season. Oh yeah, he also forced a fumble which was recovered deep in UCF territory. That turned into Grothe’s first TD run.

#6 Oklahoma (6-1) defeated #11 Missouri 41-31. The Sooners’ Chris Brown carried the ball 13 times fro just 67 yards but scored three TDs in the second half to seal the victory.

#7 South Carolina (6-1) downed neighboring North Carolina 21-15.

#8 West Virginia (5-1) was idle but is still likely to move up in the rankings.

#9 Oregon (5-1) demolished Washington State 53-7.

#10 USC (5-1) managed to squeak past Arizona 20-13 despite playing without QB John Booty.

#11 Missouri (5-1) Lost to #6 Oklahoma (6-1).

#12 Virginia Tech (6-1) tamed the Duke Blue Devils 43-14.

#13 Florida (4-2) was idle.

#14 Arizona State (7-0) remained unbeaten as they rolled over Washington 44-20.

#15 Cincinnati (6-1) saw their nine game win streak come to an end at the hands of Louisville 28-24.The Cardinals’ Brian Brohm was 28 for 38 for 350 yards and 3 TDs while the defense finally showed up for a game. Louisville’s D forced two Bearcat fumbles inside the red zone and stopped Ben Mauk on a quarterback sneak on a 4th and 1 late in the fourth quarter. They also stopped the Bearcats when they had a 1st and goal from the 2-yard line making them settle for a FG early in the fourth. Mauk ended the game 26-45 for 324 yards and 3 TDs but it wasn’t enough to keep the Bearcats’ unbeaten.

#16 Hawaii (7-0) remain unbeaten but it wasn’t easy. They had to come from 14 points back with less than 4 minutes left in regulation and then intercept a San Jose State pass in the end zone in OT to preserve the victory 42-35. Colt Brennan threw 75 passes for the Warriors. Unfortunately, 4 of them were caught by SJS defenders. He finished the game 44 for 75 for 545 yards, 4 int and 4 TDs. On the San Jose side of the ball (?), Dwight Lowery returned a punt 84 yards for one score and an interception 24 yards for another.

#17 Kentucky (6-1) defeated #1 LSU (6-1) in triple OT 43-37.

#18 Illinois (5-2) fell to Iowa 10-6.

#19 Wisconsin (5-2) as dominated by Penn State 38-7 and will slide even further down the rankings and probably out of the top 25.

#20 Kansas (6-0) rolled over Baylor 58-10 to remain undefeated.

#21 Florida State (4-2) lost o Wake Forest 24-21 and will ikely be out of the top 25, too.

#22 Auburn (5-2) edged past Arkansas 9-7 with three field goals, the last coming with just 21 seconds to go in the game. The Auburn defense held the Razorbacks to just 67 yards on the ground. They had been averaging 338 yards per game.

#23 Texas (5-2) had no trouble with Iowa State winning 56-3

#24 Georgia (5-2) eked out a victory over Vanderbilt 20-17.

#25 Tennessee (4-2) downed Mississippi State 33-21.

And Purdue, which had been undefeated two weeks ago, fell to Michigan 48-21 giving the Boilermakers a record of 5-2, 1-2 in the Big Ten.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Movin' On Up!

In a couple of hours I'll be packing up the truck and heading back up to the Bolt Hole for some more hunting. Having a spike-horned buck deboned and in the freezer takes some of the pressure off for putting up meat but there are still a pair of larger bucks roaming around the Adirondack woods that I wouldn't mind putting my tag on (or helping Mark put his tag on).

Tomorrow starts New York's one week muzzle loader season and the regular rifle season starts immediately after that. Last year we had the unfortunate excitement of a lost hunter who was found dead in the woods on the first day of muzzle loader and a near repeat on opening day of rifle. Here's hoping that no one wanders so far or without a compass or map that they get lost. I know I don't go into the woods without either and usually have a GPS unit and extra batteries in my pack.

The trip back to the Adirondacks also means I'll be going back to the land of dial-up service instead of high-speed. Oh well.

The temperatures have plummeted both here at the Aerie and up at the Bolt Hole. With a steady drizzle punctuated by heavier rains, yesterday's high temperature was only in the mid 40s as opposed to the low 80s we had Monday and Tuesday. Terry and I finally decided to put the heat on when the temperature indoors dropped to around 60. So now the thermostats are set to 64 degrees and it's quite comfortable.

Up at the Bolt Hole there may actually be some light snow later this weekend. Night time lows have been in the mid 30s so it looks like I'll be using some of the firewood we cut and stacked this summer.

Well, it's time to pack up and get a move on. Wish me luck!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

NJ Black Bear Hunt cancellation
and what it forshadows

Over at The Bitch Girls was a posting of an article by NJ State Senator Robert E. Littell called The Dissolution of Sound Wildlife Management: When Politics Trumps Science. I strongly suggest you go read it. Senator Littell was one of the saner and more honest state senators in New Jersey. But then, he came from the rural west-northwest portions of the state and had an R next to his name.

Senator Littell decries the use of politics in place of science when it comes to managing wildlife and undercutting hunting in this most very diverse of states. He rightly points out that a court decision to halt the 2007 black bear hunt will embolden Governor Corzine and his cronies to essentially do away with all hunters, fishermen and farmers on the NJ Game Council and replace them with anti-hunting and fishing persons more inclined to abandon the management plans of NJ Fish and Wildlife to the detriment of all and eventual stop of all hunting in the state. In his article he also mentions that the DEP is spending an extra $850,000 to assist in implementing non-lethal black bear management policies, monies that come primarily from fishing and hunting licenses and excise taxes.

In the discussion in the comments, one commenter, name of Jadegold, claimed someone, I’m not sure who, was spouting bad science; that the numbers were skewed. She (I’m assuming “Jade” is the tag of a female) said there were only 500 bears in NJ and their conflict with humans was triggered by our encroaching upon their (the bears') habitat.

Well a few moments of research on the NJDEP web pages brought me to these facts: 328 black bears were killed in the 2003 hunt and 298 bears were killed during the 2005 NJ hunt. The hunt itself took place only in the northwest portion of the state (north of I-78 and west of I-287).

To suggest that there are only “500 bears in New Jersey” is laughable.
A conservative estimate of 1490 bears prior to the 2003 hunt can be found on page 15 of NJDEP’s Black Bear in New Jersey - Status Report 2004 (a pdf file).

Jade claims she is never wrong, that is a “gift.” Sorry to spoil your present there Jade.

It's the Economy.

With Wal-Mart the largest and most convenient retailer in the area of the Aerie, Terry and I have been spending a good chunk of change at the local WallyWorld since our move. Add the many, many miles back and forth to the Bolt Hole I've been traveling and, well, I guess we can take some credit for this:

Stocks hit records on Wal-Mart, oil

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

A Rainy Night at the Aerie

The good news is that a cold front swept through last night and brought us some much needed rain at the Aerie.

The bad news is that rain measured 1.55 inches in about six hours, much too much too quickly for the ground to simply absorb. A good portion of the soil I put behind some retaining walls and mixed with six cubic feet of peat moss got gullied and washed down hill. I'll be spending a good portion of today trying to rake it up and redoing the stone walls meant to retain the flow.

The middle section seems to have fared the worst.

The top section is where it all begins. Rain off the roof and driveway starts to accumulate here and flows down slope. I tried to make each section relatively flat but....

It may look like the bottom section didn't do too badly but that's because it received all the soil from above. Water is supposed to soak into the soil and drain through the plastic pipe buried below, not flow over the top of the end wall.

I guess I'll have to call Don about gutters this afternoon. For now it's time for the shovels and rakes and implements of destruction to come out. At last it's considerably cooler today than yesterday. (The cold front reduced temperatures by 20-25 degrees.)

Monday, October 08, 2007

What to say?

I've been surfing the blogs all day trying to come up with something to post about here.

I've seen stories about missing hurricanes/tropical storms. (It has been an awfully quiet season, no?)

I've read about the Blue Angles performing over San Francisco during fleet week and the pulling of all military charter flights from Oakland's airport across the Bay because they tend to tread our military like second class citizens.

I've read about the heat in Chicago yesterday that led to the death of one marathon runner (who may have had a heart condition that was a ticking time bomb).

I've read about the Boss (Springsteen) feeling suppressed while he makes a grand tour promoting his newest CD. (Hey, Boss, you keep using that word. I don not thin' it means what you thin' it means.)

I've read about the Boss (Steinbrenner) threatening the job of the best manger he's ever had if the Yankees don't win this series against Cleveland. (Hasn't he passed away yet?)

I've read about a self-employed family that didn't purchase health insurance and whose car insurance apparently didn't cover the injuries to two of their kids so now they're fronting for the SCHIPs extension. (Is it proper to proclaim your poor money management to the world like that? And then expect the rest of us to pick up the tab?)

I've read and I've read but, hell, I just can't get into any of this stuff. (I didn't even save the links, dammit!)

As you may have noted while reading this little blog of mine, I seldom discuss politics. A running joke in the house is that the wife goes to vote, I have to be with her so I can vote too: just to cancel her choices out. Last year, in all the moving about and new residence, she brought the wrong ID for me to the voter registration office the day before registration closed. (She had already registered the week before.) Anyway, I didn't get to vote, so neither did she.

She leans lib, I stand a bit more firmly on the right side of the line. Once in a great while she will surprise me, but not often. We try not to talk politics too often.

I may have to start having a Daily Rant like GuyK at Charming, Just Charming but then I'd go around all day with a bug up my butt and it wouldn't be pretty. Just wouldn't be enough coffee in the morning or ice cream at night to get me over it.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Back in PA

Just in case you couldn't tell from the last couple of posts...I drove back to the Aerie in North-Central PA Saturday afternoon.

I could have stayed up at the Bolt Hole and done some target shooting with the .50 caliber muzzleloaders but I had several reasons to head back tot he Aerie. I had a full freezer of venison steaks, roasts and stew meat which left no room for the three large bags of stew meat I wanted to turn into chop meat. (Besides, I wanted to watch the night football games--especially the Rutgers-Cincinnati match-up. I mean who really thought the better game would be USC vs Stanford? That and the fact that I hadn't seen Terry for more than a day in the last month. She'd be heading out to somewhere when I got back or she would get back and I would be heading out.)

Terry and I had what turned out to be 9 pounds of venison chunks turned into ground meat within an hour after I got home. A short time later eight 1-pound packages were in the freezer and there was a pot of spaghetti sauce bubbling away on the stove.

Oh, and it's bow season for deer in PA right now too. I might just get out and try my luck.

Post Week 6 Polls

The new polls have come out after the Week 6 Mayhem. As might be expected, there’s been some reshuffling of the teams on the list. Several are out and a few are back in after a brief hiatus. I’ll give the new listings from the AP Writers’ Poll and The Coaches’ Poll.

#1 LSU (6-0) This week the Tigers are at #17/18 Kentucky (5-1)

#2 California Bears (5-0) at home against Oregon State (3-3)

#3 Ohio State (6-0) at home versus Kent State (3-3)

#4 Boston College (6-0) faces Notre Dame (1-5) in South Bend in the Catholic Bowl

#5/6 South Florida (5-0) at home against Central Florida (3-2)

#6/5 Oklahoma (5-1) on the road against #11 Missouri (5-0)

#7/12 South Carolina (5-1) on the road against North Carolina (2-4)

#8/9 West Virginia (5-1) is idle this week

#9/8 Oregon (4-1) is back in action at home against Washington State (2-4)

#10/7 Southern California (4-1) faces Arizona (2-4) at home

#11 Missouri (5-0) is at h9ome against Texas Tech (5-1)

#12/10 Virginia Tech (5-1) on the road to Duke (1-5)

#13/14 Florida (4-2) is idle this week

#14/13 Arizona State (6-0) is at home against Washington (2-3)

#15/17 Cincinnati (6-0) host Louisville (3-3)

#16 Hawaii (6-0) plays Friday night at San Jose State (3-3)

#17/18 Kentucky (5-1) goes to Baton Rouge to face #1 LSU (6-0)

#18/19 Illinois (5-1) heads to Iowa (2-4)

#19/15 Wisconsin (5-1) travels to Happy Valley to face Penn State (4-2)

#20 Kansas (5-0) hosts Baylor (3-3)

#21 Florida State (4-1) is idle this week

#22/25 Auburn (4-2) plays at Arkansas (3-2)

#23/22 Texas (4-2) travels to Iowa State (1-5)

#24/23 Georgia (4-2) visits Vanderbilt (3-2)

#25/NR Tennessee (3-2) goes to Mississippi State (4-2)

NR/24 Purdue (5-1) goes to Michigan (4-2)

New to the list this week are Kansas, Illinois, Florida State, Auburn and Tennessee. Some of these were on the list previously but dropped out due to a loss—or two.

Gone from the list this week are Rutgers, Clemson, Kansas State, UCLA, and Nebraska.

The Undefeated after Week 6

The number of undefeated teams has been dwindling. There are now just ten teams which are 5-0 or 6-0.

Those still working with an unblemished record are (in alphabetical order):

School Conference Results of Week 6.
Arizona State Pac 10 Now 6-0 after defeating Washington State.
Boston College ACC Now 6-0 after beating Bowling Green.
California Pac 10 Still 5-0 after an idle week.
Cincinnati Big East Now 6-0 after defeating Rutgers.
Connecticut Big East Still 5-0 after an idle week.
Hawaii WAC Now 6-0 after beating Utah State.
Kansas Big 12 Now 5-0 after beating Kansas State.
LSU SEC Now 6-0 after beating Florida.
Missouri Big 12 Now 5-0 after beating Nebraska.
Ohio State Big Ten Now 6-0 after beating Purdue.
South Florida Big East Now 4-0 after defeating West Virginia.

The Wild and Wacky World
of College Football
Week 6 Results

It was another wild ride for the ranked teams in college football this week. While seven games matched ranked teams against one another guaranteeing one would lose, four other Top 25 teams fell to unranked opponents. Of the eleven Top 25 teams to lose, four were in the Top 10. The big beneficiaries of this wildness could be #3 Cal (5-0) and #14 Oregon (4-1)—and they were both idle.

#1 LSU (6-0) managed to come from behind with a minute to go to edge #9 Florida (4-2), 28-24.

#2 Southern California (4-1) was upset by unranked Stanford (2-3) in a shocker at the Coliseum, 24-23, when the Cardinal scored on a TD pass with 49 seconds left in the game. Stanford entered the game a 41 point underdog yet ends the Trojans’ 35-game home winning streak. USC last lost in the Coliseum on September 29, 2001 in the first
year of Pete Carrol’s coaching stint. The opponent? Stanford.

#3 Cal (5-0) was idle this week, yet could move up.

#4 Ohio State (6-0) defeated #23 Purdue (5-1) by a score of 23-7.

#5 Wisconsin (5-1) found Champaign not to their liking as the Fighting Illini of Illinois (5-1) beat the Badgers 31-26.

#6 South Florida (5-0) struggled in the first half but emerged victorious over Florida Atlantic 35-23.

#7 Boston College (6-0) rolled over Bowling Green (3-2) by a wide margin, 55-24.

#8 Kentucky (5-1) fell to #11 South Carolina (5-1) 38-23.

#9 Florida (4-1) was overcome late by #1 LSU (6-0) 28-24.

#10 Oklahoma (5-1) beat #19 Texas (4-2) in the Cotton Bowl, 28-21.

#11 South Carolina Gamecocks (5-1) tamed the #8 Kentucky Wildcats (5-1) 38-23.

#12 Georgia Bulldogs (4-2) were trounced by Tennessee (3-2) 35-14.

#13 West Virginia (5-1) squeezed the Syracuse Orange (1-5) 55-14. The bad news for the Mountaineers was that QB Pat White was injured for the second straight week and had to leave the game in the third quarter. Lucky for them they have next week off.

#14 Oregon (4-1) was idle.

#15 Virginia Tech (5-1) ran over #22 Clemson (4-2) 41-23. The Hokies scored on an interception return, a punt return and a kickoff return. Oh, they also got two field goals, a TD pass and a rushing TD. What? No safety?

#16 Hawaii (6-0) continues to roll. This time over Utah State (0-6) 52, 37. Colt Brennan had to leave the game at half time due to injury but his replacement, Tyler Graunke went 9-of-11 for 246 yards and 3 TDs.

#17 Missouri (5-0) mauled #25 Nebraska (4-2) 41-6.

#18 Arizona State (6-0) barely edged Washington State (2-4) 23-20.

#19 Texas (4-2) were dehorned by #10 Oklahoma (5-1) 28-21.

#20 Cincinnati (6-0) used turnovers (naturally) to defeat #21 Rutgers (3-2) 28-23.

#21 Rutgers…aw, look above.

#22 Clemson (4-2) fell to #15 Virginia Tech (5-1) 41-23.

#23 Purdue (5-1) lost to #4 Ohio State (6-0) 23-7.

#24 Kansas State (3-2) fell to unranked (but they will be!) Kansas (5-0) 30-24.

#25 Nebraska (4-2) was overpowered by #17 Missouri (5-0) 41-6.

And on a final note:

Notre Dame (1-5) beat UCLA (4-2) 20-6.
What? You thought they might lose them all? Yeah, me too.

#20 Cincinnati defeats #21 Rutgers, 28-23

Rutgers R.small
The Rutgers’ Scarlet Knights trailed the Bearcats 28-23 when they got the ball back on their own 20-yard line with 2:13 remaining. They were trailing, in part, because Cincinnati was able to convert two turnovers into 14 points. With 80 yards to go and only a short time to do it in, Quarterback Mike Teel went to work. He completed five consecutive passes at one point—most of them slants across the middle to Tim Brown—to get the Knights to the Bearcats’ 17 yard line. But he went to the well once too often on a second-and-three play. As Brown made the move across the middle, Bearcats’ linebacker Ryan Manalac closed fast, stepped in front and intercepted the pass from Mike Teel. That put the end to any chance Rutgers had for a fourth quarter comeback as Cincinnati ran out the minute that remained on the clock.

Ray Rice was held to just 96 net yards rushing as the offensive line just couldn’t seem to open many holes for him.

Mike Teel threw for a career high 344 yards but also tossed three interceptions. He had four against the Bearcats in last year’s 31-11 loss at Cincinnati.
Cincinnati is now 6-0, 1-0 in the Big East.
Rutgers falls to 3-2, 0-1. Their next opponent is Syracuse at the Carrier Dome. The Knights are on the road for the first time this year. It will be a sell-out crowd for the Orange’s Homecoming but a good portion of the crowd will be wearing Scarlet.

Friday, October 05, 2007

There'll be venison for Thanksgiving!

Along with turkey and pumpkin pie.

I climbed back into my tree stand yesterday at 2:30 PM determined to sit until 7 PM when I knew the light would give out. There were plenty of red squirrels, chipmunks and birds to watch including a silly ruffed grouse that made way to much noise in the dry leaves and had my heart racing for a few minutes before it strutted into view. I came close to dozing off a few times and was thankful for the safety rope that I wore as a matter of course.

I had almost given up for the day when 6:30 rolled around and I had seen no deer--or bear--come down the trails I had staked out. Then there was a much louder and more determined sounding tread in the leaves over my left shoulder. In the fading light I could just make out the approaching deer about forty yards out as it followed one of the trails toward the clearing thirty yards ahead of me. If it continued on its chosen path it would pass within 10 yards of my stand. I quietly got my bow in hand, nocked an arrow, and stared at the deer's head willing antlers to be present.

It was clear that if this were a buck, it wasn't one of the larger animals we'd seen. There's an 8-pointer with a beautifully symmetrical rack and a 6-pointer with a very, very wide rack out there somewhere. And they ARE still out there. What was coming down the trail did indeed have horns but they were small spikes no longer than his ears. But, hey, this was bow season in the Adirondacks, for crying out loud, and as the saying goes, "You can't eat horns."

As the buck walked down the trail, he passed less than eight yards from my stand and stopped in a small opening about 10 yards away and looked towards that clearing ahead. He was completely unaware of my presence. This was my chance. I slowly drew the arrow back and.... Damn! The aluminum shaft made a squeeking noise as I reached 3/4 draw and the buck bolted off the trail into the thicket to his right. Damn! Damn! Double damn!

But I've played this game before and felt pretty sure he had no idea what or where that unusual sound came from. I let down on the tension on the bow and stood perfectly still. The buck made no snorting sounds nor did he stamp his feet as deer will do when they see something they perceive to be a threat but aren't quite sure of and so wish to issue a challenge. No, this guy was quiet which gave me even more hope that he was unaware of my presence.

Five minutes passed and there was only a little noise from where the buck had disappeared. The soft tread of the deer as he made another attempt to head to the spot where I had placed my scent lure. Then he stepped out of the thicket and into the edge of the clearing. There were still some trees shielding him from me but I felt that if he moved a few more yards to the north, I would have a clear broad-side shot at about 30 yards. As he cautiously moved forward, I drew back the arrow making sure it didn't hit metal-on-metal again. Once at full draw I settled the site-pin on that small spot just where the front shoulder blade meets the chest. And....

He took one more step forward and the point I wanted was behind the trunk of a small tree. I waited and hoped he would move forward one more step before my arms got tired! I need not have worried. Between the adrenalin coursing through me and his curiosity about the odor ahead.... He took the needed step and I released the arrow.

My aim was true, but the distance was a tad shorter than I had thought. I've heart shot deer that sprung and ran 30, 40 even 50 yards on pure adrenaline. This buck just dropped like I had shot it with a high-powered rifle, lay there a second and then tried to stand. Unfortunately for him, the arrow had passed through the upper part of the shoulder blade and into his spinal cord. He couldn't get up.

I quickly got out of the tree stand and hurried over to the fallen deer. He was still capable of swinging his head about and the front legs could thrash but he wasn't going anywhere. I couldn't get close enough to cut his throat because of those thrashing legs so I nocked another arrow, aimed and put it into his heart. A minute later it was all over.

Now came the hard part.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

I hate it. I hate it. I hate it.

Have I mentioned how much I HATE dial-up?

E v e r y t h i n g i s s o s l o w .

Nothing yet

Deer and bear are predominately nocturnal animals. Man, when hunting legally as prescribed by the state, is confined to the daylight hours. This is why there is NOTHING HANGING FROM THE MEAT POLE...yet.

I've spent two days sitting in trees and nearly falling asleep in trees but have only seen red squirrels (noisy little b*st*rds!) and birds. Oh and one little mouse or shrew that scurried very, very quickly from one hole in the ground to another and clearly did not wish to be above ground during the day. The red squirrels seem to think I'm trespassing and have a nasty habit of screaming at me which especially disconcerting when they sneak up the tree behind me. But, hey, they've been in my attic, so turnabout is fair. Am I right?

Actually I lied a bit up there in the first paragraph. Deer and bear will occasionally linger in the twilight hours after sunrise or just before sunset. Seldom will they be abroad during the middle of the day except during the rut when a buck might be in search of a doe in heat at any hour. Kind of like a teenager with raging hormones. But the rut in these here parts of the country is weeks away.

Monday, October 01, 2007

In mourning

I've not much to say today. Rutgers lost. The Jets lost. The friggin' Mets lost.

Maybe I'll find some thing good to post about later. If not, wake me up tomorrow.

Wait. I'll be going to the Bolt Hole tomorrow and that means a four hour ride and then dial up service. Shit!

Hopefully I'll get luck and my bow hunting in NY will be a short affair for all the right reasons.